APRA AMCOS’ objective to seek fair remuneration for artists was made clear to a Melbourne music venue owner last week.

Peter Arhontogiorgis, director of Illusion Bar & Nightclub in Carlton, has been ordered to pay APRA AMCOS (who represent the rights of songwriters, publishers and composers) $114,113.28 in licence fees, interest, court costs and additional damages.

Because his business performed music in public without a licence for three years and three months (from 1 September 2013 to 31 December 2016), Arhontogiorgis was charged with infringement of the Copyright Act 1968.

Judge Philip Dowdy of the Federal Circuit Court said the venue director has a “complete and deliberate disregard of [APRA AMCOS’] rights”.

APRA AMCOS told TIO it filed the Application 11 November 2016.

Mr Richard Mallett, Head of Revenue at APRA AMCOS said: “The majority of hotels, bars and nightclubs not only recognise the importance of music to their business and its ability to attract and hold clientele, but understand they also have an obligation to ensure that songwriters are properly paid.

“Unfortunately for Mr Arhontogiorgis he has found out what happens when you trade on the commercial benefits of music without paying for it”.

Arhontogiorgis did not appear in court.

If you’re unsure whether your business needs a licence, head to APRA AMCOS for more information.